MP Mostafa Bakry accuses other members of seeking revenge

Independent MP Mostafa Bakry accused members of Parliament who submitted a memo to refer him to the Ethics Committee of attempting to take revenge on him after he accused another member of insulting Egypt’s military leader.

The proposed investigation of Bakry refers to critical comments he made earlier this month, in which he called former International Atomic Energy Agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei a traitor.

Bakry told the privately owned Al-Hayat satellite channel on Monday that he expressed his opinion of ElBaradei without violating parliamentary regulations. He said that in his criticism, he cited the words of ElBaradei himself, such as his description of American NGOs in Egypt as “the icon of freedom.”

The People's Assembly on Monday rejected a request submitted by 32 MPs — most of them liberals — to refer Bakry for questioning over his accusations against ElBaradei.

Bakry said the referral attempt is punishment for him previously leading the charge against Egyptian Social Democratic Party MP Zyad Elelaimy, who had insulted military leader Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi and held him responsible for the football violence in Port Said that left 74 dead earlier this month.

Meanwhile, Bakry said he will continue to work to prevent NGOs from receiving foreign funds.

The MP said if Egypt’s foreign minister gives permission to Freedom House, the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute — three US-based NGOs named in a recent criminal investigation — to operate inside Egypt, Bakry would submit a request to question him.

Meanwhile, Nader Bakkar, the spokesperson for the Salafi-led Nour Party, said that like Elelaimy, Bakry should be held accountable for his words.

“I categorically reject the disgraceful position taken by Nour Party MPs who praised Bakry for what he said. What he did should be condemned just like Elelaimy,” Bakkar said on his Facebook page.

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